Timothy Cheruiyot, the reigning world 1500m champion who was fourth at Kenya’s Olympic Trials, was a late add to the Tokyo Olympic roster, replacing another runner.
Kamar Etyang, an 18-year-old who was second at last month’s Trials, was taken off the team because he doesn’t have the minimum number of out-of-competition drug tests for a Kenyan athlete, a Kenya Olympic Committee spokesperson confirmed Wednesday.
Etyang was an unknown before this year, with one pre-2021 result on his World Athletics bio page.
Cheruiyot, 25, had not finished worse than second in any 1500m races in four years before his stunning fourth at Trials. He was not included on the announced Olympic team that day.
Cheruiyot reportedly limped off to a medical tent in Nairobi. Last Friday, he ran the world’s fastest 1500m in this Olympic cycle, a personal best 3:28.48 and then said he was hopeful to be added to the Olympic team.
Cheruiyot is the Olympic favorite. Matthew Centrowitz, who in Rio became the first U.S. Olympic 1500m champion in 108 years, looks to defend his title. Norwegian Jakob Ingebrigtsen, 20, hopes to become the second-youngest Olympic 1500m champion in history, according to Olympedia.org.
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